Supporting Kurdish People

by Michael Ford last modified 14 May, 2019 04:11 PM

An event that aims to help churches work with Kurdish Communities takes place next Wednesday.

Supporting Kurdish People

Image courtesy www.presenceandengagement.org.uk

Supporting Kurdish People, which is being run by the Church of England’s Presence and Engagement (P&E) Team, takes place on Wednesday 22 May in Stoke on Trent, from 12-3pm.

Kat Brealey, P&E's National Programme Coordinator explained more about the day:

"We will be joined by Craig and Sandy, who between them have a wealth of experience. Craig first made friends with Kurdish students who were studying with his wife, an English teacher. He now works full time for OM in Birmingham, getting to know Kurdish people and helping local churches welcome them.

"Sandy was born in Iraq, where his parents were working. After becoming a Christian at university, he returned to the Middle East in 1985. He now splits his time between London and Erbil, and is involved with Bible translation, as well as connecting with the Kurdish diaspora around Europe.

"You’ll know that P&E has done some work in recent years to support clergy who have Persians in their congregation. Increasingly these churches are also welcoming Kurdish people, and so I am convening an opportunity for clergy to meet and share experiences of doing this and the specific issues it raises.

"Craig and Sandy will give an introduction to Kurdistan and Kurdish people, and share some insights into appropriate welcome and discipleship. We will also have plenty of time for people to share stories of what is happening in churches, and the opportunity to explore together some of the challenges of this area of ministry.

"We are being hosted in Stoke on Trent by Rev Sally Smith, vicar of St Mark’s, which also hosts Sanctus, a drop in for refugees and asylum seekers.

"The meeting will not take place in the church itself but rather be held at YMCA North Staffordshire, Harding Road, Stoke-on-Trent, ST1 3AE [contact link here<https://ymcans.org.uk/contact-us/].

"This meeting is designed for clergy and lay people in the Church of England who are working with Kurdish Christians – as opposed to being a gathering for Kurdish Christians. It may be that we decide to work towards organising such a gathering in due course, but for now we are still at the early stages of understanding what is happening and identifying what the needs might be."

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